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Aviagen slower-growing breeds get stamp of approval by Italian Ministry of Agriculture

by 5m Editor
25 March 2019, at 12:00a.m.

Rowan Range birds recognised for welfare and quality, as market demand grows in Italy.

The Ranger Gold™ and Rowan Ranger® birds in Aviagen®’s Rowan Range® family of slower-growing breeds have recently been fully accredited by the Italian Ministry of Agriculture (Dipartimento Delle Politiche Europee Ed Internazionali e Dello Sviluppo Rurale). This achievement represents an official recognition of the strong welfare characteristics of the birds.

Tried and tested for quality and welfare

The approval process involved a comparative broiler test conducted by an independent authority, the Council for Agricultural Research and Economics (CREA). The test measured daily growth as well as the tendency for ranging and foraging. It also considered the expression of other important welfare traits such as livability, leg robustness and gait score. CREA then supplied the results to the Italian Ministry of Agriculture to accredit the Ranger Gold and the Rowan Ranger as slow-growing breeds.

In 2018, Rowan Range birds also underwent thorough marketing trials by major Italian producers, who saw firsthand the performance capabilities of these birds. Further parent stock testing is expected to take place this year. Additionally, producers are evaluating the market demand in the up-and-coming slower-growing sector.

Claudio Ambrogio, business manager for the Rowan Range in Europe, explains that customers throughout Italy will profit from the welfare approval by the Italian ministry. “We’re committed to our customers’ success, and with the Rowan Range they can address consumer needs in a sector that is enjoying a growing demand across the country, while at the same time reaping the benefits of a bird with excellent performance and efficiency.”

Welfare recognition throughout Europe

The list of authorisations by official organisations awarded to the Rowan Range continues to grow, as more and more consumers express an interest in slower-growing, free range and organic poultry. Various Rowan Range birds have met the criteria for other animal welfare programs globally, including Beter Leven (Better Life) in the Netherlands; German animal protection organisation Tierschutzlabel, Deutscher Tierschutzbund e.V. (DTSchB); and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) in the UK.